Tuesday, Dec. 08, 2009

What Reformation?

Nearly five centuries after Henry VIII left the Roman Catholic Church and took his country with him, Pope Benedict XVI announced that he was creating a way for disaffected Anglicans — many of whom are troubled by moves to allow ordination of gay priests — to come back into the fold while maintaining some of their unique religious identity. The Vatican's guidelines would allow Anglicans, including married priests, to practice Catholicism while using much of their own liturgy. Many critics charged that the move was simply a way to encourage a full-fledged schism within the Anglican Communion's 80 million members worldwide. After some Catholics also expressed concern — about the precedent of allowing married Anglican priests in the church while maintaining the requirement of celibacy for Catholic clergy — the Vatican made clear that it would make few exceptions for married Anglican priests.